Who doesn’t like shopping at Target?
With a great range of clothing, electronics, groceries, home furnishings, and other products, it’s one of my favorite stores.
But did you know there are lots of ways you can save money?
And no, you don’t always need Target coupons to take advantage of these money saving opportunities.
Here is the ultimate list of Target money-saving hacks and tricks that will save you more money at Target that you ever thought possible.
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What will I learn?
1. Get 2% cashback by shopping via Swagbucks
This may not be considered directly saving at Target, but who doesn’t like getting free money?
I am a big fan of using online cash back sites.
To me, it’s a no-brainer – if you’re going to buy something anyway, you may as well go through a cashback site and earn some cash back.
It’s like free money.
So, if there are things that you don’t have to go to the store to get, consider shopping online at Target’s website.
But first, sign up with Swagbucks.com so you can get paid for shopping.
Here is how…
- First, sign up for Swagbucks.com (it’s free)
- Login to your dashboard and enter “Target” in the search bar at the top of your Swagbucks dashboard.
- Then click on the store link and shop as you normally would.
- You will be paid 2 SB for every dollar you spend at Target.com. That’s 2% Cash Back
To make this even better, Swagbucks will give new members a free $5 sign up bonus. It’s a win-win!
2. Shop online, pick up in-store
It only makes sense to avoid the shipping charges, and ask Target to ship-to-store for your pickup – and of course, some items may already be in stock.
By picking online, you make Target run around and select the things you want, rather than having to push a cart around the store yourself.
And yes, you can do this even if you go through Swagbucks first. As I mentioned, everything stays the same when you shop through Swagbucks or other cashback sites. The only difference is that you get paid for shopping.
3. Use Target Cartwheel
Update: Target Cartwheel has been replaced by Target Circle. A lot of the same benefits still apply.
This is a new social coupon program started by Target, and you can register with it at Cartwheel.Target.com.
To use it, you simply log in and pick the coupons you want.
The program generates an individual personal barcode for you which you can print out, or send to your mobile phone. The cashier scans your barcode and all your eligible coupons are applied.
What’s really nice is that each coupon can be used four times, letting you get the discount as many times as the number of items you buy.
4. Text COUPONS to 827438 for instant coupons
To make sure you get the latest in coupons, every time before you go to Target you should text COUPONS to Target (827438), and you’ll be rewarded with coupons for the day.
5. Combine manufacturer coupons with store coupons
Did you know that you can combine coupons with Target?
Target allows you to use a manufacturer coupon as well as a Target coupon on every item, so you can sometimes even get things for free or at a very low cost.
6. Target coupons
In fact, Target even has a part of its website just devoted to giving you coupons.
Just be sure to check it before you go shopping so you don’t miss out on free coupons that could save you a lot of money.
7. Save money on diapers & baby products at Target
Here is a quick and easy way to get coupons and free samples of diapers, baby wipes, and other baby products.
All you have to do is start a free Target baby registry here, confirm your email, the visit your local Target to pick up your free baby gift at Guest Services!
8. Buy store-brand items
Make sure you don’t simply shop for the brands you can get everywhere.
Target has its own brands which include:
- Market Pantry
- Archer Farms
- Up & Up
These are every bit as good as the brand-name products.
9. Get the REDcard
I expect you get tired of the cashier asking if you want to open a Target REDcard account.
But you really should consider it!
You can get a card that you can use as a credit or a debit card, and it comes with several perks.
- You will get 5% off your entire purchase at Target every time
- You will qualify for free shipping on online orders.
- There is no annual fee
- And you even get an extra month in which to return items you don’t want.
And if that’s not enough, read our Target REDcard review for all the benefits of having this card.
10. Don’t forget the Rain Check
Target offers rain checks on goods that are out of stock, perhaps because they’re on sale.
What’s a Rain Check, you ask?
I’ll let Target explain:
A rain check may be available if a sale item is not available at your Target store. The rain check entitles you to today’s sale price for the next 30-45 days (varies by state), and can be used at any Target store. Rain checks are not offered on Target.com.
Before you think it’s too much hassle to go to Guest Services to get a rain check, you should know that you can get one by taking a picture of the tag on the shelf and asking for the rain check at the checkout register.
11. The secret clearance codes
You’ve probably noticed when an item goes on clearance the orange price tag shows both the old and new prices.
The secret is that if the clearance price ends in .08 or .06, then the discounts may not be over. Provided there’s still some stock to clear after two weeks, look for the price to drop further and to finish in .04.
When the clearance price ends in .04, that’s when you know it’s time to buy since it won’t go any lower than that.
12. Grab free staff from Target
Just like its main competitor Walmart, Target also offers freebies.
Become a part of Target Bullseye program and receive free products and samples in exchange for reviews.
13. Use ShopKick
It’s worth getting the app called ShopKick loaded on your phone.
You collect “kicks” or points for various activities, such as scanning items with your phone, checking in at the store, and referring friends.
The app works with other stores too.
It’s particularly good for Target shoppers because you will earn a two-dollar Target gift card when you have collected just 500 “kicks”.
14. Shop the End Caps
You know where most of the clearance sales end up, don’t you?
On the end caps, which is what they call the shelves at the end of each aisle.
Walk around the perimeter of the store before you go through the middle, and you should see most of them.
Target has set discounts that apply to clearance items, though the initial discount can vary by department.
The discounts are 15%, 25%, 30%, 50%, 75%, and 90%, though it’s usually only holiday items that get up to the maximum discount of 90%.
If you’re not happy with the current discount, then you could wait for it to be increased to the next value, though you risk Target selling out of what you want.
15. Shop the online (clearance) End Caps
There’s an equivalent place for clearance items online.
This time, you should go to Target.com/c/clearance and check out what’s available.
There are times when you can get up to 60% off on products through the online clearance section.
16. Check your receipt for coupons
Obviously, you always check your receipt to make sure the correct items are listed.
But there’s another reason you should check your receipt.
Target is now automatically printing out coupons for additional items on the bottom of each receipt.
17. Use the Target Registry
When you have a big event coming, you should sign up for the Target gift registry program so you can enjoy extra savings.
If you join the wedding registry and have items left on your list after your wedding, then you’ll get 15% off of them.
If you’re expecting, join the baby registry and you and your friends will get 15% off items listed on it in the eight weeks before your due date.
The college registry allows you 15% off the remaining items on your list in the two weeks before college starts.
18. Automatic couponing
Here’s another trick…
If you want to find manufacturer’s coupons that you can use on Target’s sales but can’t face the hassle, try CouponMom.com.
This website will match up the items on Target’s current sale list with any coupons the manufacturers are offering.
19. Sign up for the mobile coupon program
And the next trick is to sign up for target coupons to be sent to your mobile.
If you go to Target.com/spot/mobile/landing you can join the mobile coupon program, and get a fresh load of coupons sent to your phone every month.
You don’t print them out, but simply have the barcode on your phone scanned when you check out.
20. Consider the pharmacy
Instead of going to your local drugstore, compare prices filling your prescription at Target.
There was a report in Consumer Reports that said Target usually worked out much cheaper than drugstore chains or supermarkets when buying your medicines.
21. Stack sales with rebates
If you’re serious about saving money at Target, there’re a couple more apps you probably want to install.
You can sign up for both these apps using just your name and your email address. And when you open the apps, navigate towards Rebates and Target. Then you’ll see all the items you can buy and get a rebate.
For instance, you might find that you can buy milk and get a $.50 rebate. All you have to do to claim it is take a picture of your receipt for the milk.
This works well, as long as you just buy the things you are going to buy anyway. Don’t fall into that trap of buying stuff you didn’t really want, just because you get money back!
22. Learn the best day to shop at Target
I bet you didn’t know that the different departments mark down the goods on different days of the week.
Just take a look at this schedule, and make sure you shop on the appropriate day for the goods you are buying.
- On Monday, you should look for electronics, children’s clothing, books, stationery, and accessories.
- Tuesday is the best day to buy women’s clothing, pets’ goods, domestics, and food.
- When Wednesday comes around, you should shop for men’s clothing, lawn and garden, and beauty products.
- Whereas on Thursdays, toys, sporting goods, luggage, shoes, and lingerie are the best things to buy.
- Finally, Friday is the discount day for the auto department, hardware, jewelry, and cosmetics.
23. Take advantage of seasonal clearance
You know that holiday goods are always discounted after the holiday has gone.
In case you’re wondering, here’s the schedule of when they discount:
- On the day after the holiday, expect to see 50% off.
- Three days after, the discount goes to 75%.
- And if you wait until a week after the holiday, you’ll get 90% off, provided they have any items left.
And look for clearance deals after each season, usually in January, July, and August. If you buy a bikini when winter approaches, or sweaters in the spring, then you should expect to get a good deal.
24. Don’t forget the Dollar Spot
Make sure you check out the bargain area, the Dollar Spot before you search for the rest of the items on your shopping list.
You might find something you need at a decent price.
25. Get an extra discount for bringing your own bag
Bring your own reusable shopping bags, and Target will give you five cents off for each one you use.
Now, I don’t know if you can bring a bunch of bags and put one item in each, but you get the idea.
26. Targets does price matching
Like many other big stores, Target will price match with identical items advertised for a lower price by a competitor.
They will even price match their own prices if the item goes on sale in the following week. Just bring back the original receipt and an advertisement to claim your refund.
27. Get free gift cards
It’s always worth looking for free gift card offers in the Target ads and shown on the shelves.
If the gift card is often on something you use anyway, it might be worth buying it in bulk just to get the offer.
28. Check out the current promotions
Before you go to the store, make sure you are up to date with all the current promotions, which are listed on the website.
It gives full details of which products are being promoted, and on which days.
Of course, you can also check out deal sites for the latest offers and promotions for not only Target, but Walmart, Kmart, and other retailers.
29. Win free Target gift cards
You may win something, and every month one lucky person wins $1500.
30. Stack coupons
Have you heard of coupon stacking?
That’s when you use several different coupons when you buy an item.
Target allows you to do this, though it may limit the quantities you can buy.
If you have a Target coupon, plus a manufacturer’s coupon, plus a Cartwheel coupon, then you can use all three and save a bunch.
31. Look for unrestricted coupons
Sure, some coupons specify the size or weight of the goods you have to buy with them, but others don’t have any such restrictions.
Find unrestricted coupons in a newspaper, and use them to buy trial-size items. In many cases, the goods will be free after the coupon, or very cheap.
32. Buy discounted gift cards
You can look online for discounted gift cards, and buy your goods with them.
Gift Card Granny is a good place to start.
I checked the site when I was writing this post and there were Target gift cards for up to 7% off.
33. Daily Deals
In addition to all the other discounts mentioned, Target will also discount up to five items each day, for one day only.
These are known as the Daily Deals, and can be found at here.
I remember reading an article about saving money at Target on Yahoo where the writer was saying she started buying times on sale through the Daily Deals section and then selling them for a profit on eBay and even on Craigslist. Not sure if it’d be worth it, but something you may want to keep an eye on.
34. Follow Target on social media
It pays to stay in touch with Target on social media. You’ll find out about holiday discounts and special offers and can also connect with customer service if you have any problems.
Here are links to Target’s main social media accounts:
35. Check out fan sites
Target is big enough that it has attracted several fan groups.
They also have tips on how to save even more with coupons.
Bonus: Goodwill can be worthwhile
If you shop at the Goodwill store, you may pick up some Target items really cheaply.
Not everyone knows that Target frequently donates its unsold merchandise to Goodwill to clear its shelves to make way for new merchandise. Worth checking out!
Target coupon policy
To maximize your savings when shopping at Target it’s good to know the rules and policies when it comes to couponing at Target.
Here are some answers to a few very common questions about Target that will help you save lots of money at Target.
Can you combine Target coupons with manufacturer coupons?
Yes. You can!
However, there are certain rules and conditions.
For example, there is a limit of 4 identical coupons per household, per day.
Also, you can only combine one manufacturer coupon, one Target coupon, and one Cartwheel offer item.
Printable Target coupons
Target does accept internet coupons with a scannable barcode.
However, they won’t accept printable coupons for free items with no purchase requirements.
Competitor Coupons Policy
Unfortunately, the company will not accept coupons from its competitors.
Double coupons policy
Coupons are redeemed at face value only (no doubling).
Buy One Get One Free (BOGO) coupons policy
- You can not combine BOGO coupons. Meaning, you can’t use two BOGO coupons on two items and get both for free.
- You can use a manufacturer coupon on top of using a Target coupon on the first item.
- If you use a manufacturer BOGO coupon, you are allowed to use an additional Target coupon on the first item.
You can read the complete Target Coupon Policy here.
That’s a lot of ways to save money when you shop at Target.
Some of the discount methods can be combined for bigger savings, and others stand alone.
Whichever deals you decide to use, one thing’s for sure – you can save extra money at Target by paying attention to how and when you shop.